Review: The Glenlivet Rum & Bourbon Fusion Cask Selection

Review: The Glenlivet Rum & Bourbon Fusion Cask Selection

The Glenlivet continues its parade of unusual and unexpected whiskies with its new Fusion Cask Selection, which it describes as “a category-first innovation,” selectively finished in “bespoke casks that are uniquely crafted by fusing dismantled first-fill rum and bourbon barrels.” If this sounds at all familiar, you might be recalling Amrut’s Fusion release, which has the same basic idea. No specific ages are attached to the whisky, either primary aging or finishing.

If you’re looking for a crowd-pleaser single malt to add to your repertoire, Glenlivet Fusion will certainly fit the bill. The nose is pretty and sweet, a mix of malty cereal, toasted sesame seeds, and a significant and unmistakable coffee aroma. There’s fruit galore here though it’s never overwhelming, a mix of green banana, stewed apples, and stone fruits.

The palate is soothing and refreshing; with a mixer, this whisky will delight anyone. On its own things are equally enjoyable, the coffee character again impossible to miss, with notes of vanilla and caramel giving it a hint of a dessert-like quality. Brighter notes of banana and coconut emerge from there, hinting at tiki, with chocolate leading to even more coffee on the finish — lightly touched with baking spices. I have never encountered a Scotch whisky so redolent with coffee notes — and yet so bizarrely absent from the official tasting notes. For after-dinner sipping, I love it.

For a variety of reasons, the whisky doesn’t feel overly “serious” — particularly at a mere 80 proof (it could stand to be stronger) — but that’s not a slam. There is a place in the market — and on your shelf — for a unique and vibrant whisky like this. Rum fans especially should give it a try.

80 proof.


The Glenlivet Rum & Bourbon Fusion Cask Selection




Christopher Null is the founder and editor in chief of Drinkhacker. A veteran writer and journalist, he also operates Null Media, a bespoke content creation company.

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